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Just announced: Dub FX, 1st May.

Dub FX

01 May / 19:30 / More Info / Tickets on sale tomorrow, 9am

Dub FX built his audience through blood, sweat & busking. Taking to the street 8 years ago with a Loop Station, a few coins and his talent, a friend along the way posted his street performances on Youtube. Instantly people were enthralled by his story, nature & his unique way of creating music.

His trademark is creating rich live music using only his own performance aided by live looping and effect pedals combined with his voice.

Just announced: Magma, 7th May.

Magma

07 May / 19:00 / More Info / Tickets on sale soon

Magma play Manchester for the first time since the ‘70s.

Since releasing their self titled debut album in 1970, French rock group Magmahave captivated listeners with an explosive fusion of rock, jazz and classical composition including powerful brass and mysterious vocals devised in their own eccentric language to complete their unique sound. 

The group consists of leader Christian Vander (Drums, Vocals) Stella Vander(Vocals) Isabelle Feuillebois (Vocals) Herve Aknin (Vocals) Benoit Alziary(Vibraphone) James Mac Gaw (Guitar) Bruno Ruder (Piano) and Philippe Bussonnet (Bass). Their backgrounds in Classical, Jazz, Blues, Rock and Pop mean the eight founding members are musicians with the requisite talents to bring their unique and visionary music to life.

Their 1973 album “Mekanïk Destruktïw Kommandöh” is there most accomplished and renowned work, earning it a spot in the French edition of Rolling Stone’s Best French Rock albums list. Its influence is clear on albums like Fear of Music by Talking Heads, and draws parallels with German groups like Can and Amon Duul as well as prog and jazz fusion acts. 

Being a group with such an outlandish style and experimental music made them hard to classify, and earned them a cult status among psych and prog fans. This is their first time playing in Manchester for many years, making a must see show.

Just announced: Edward II, 23rd April.

Edward II

23 April / 19:30 / More Info / Buy Tickets

Take a regular English country band, add a reggae rhythm section, sweet vocal harmonies, blistering brass and scattergun melodeon and you have the phenomena that is Edward II. Throughout the ‘00s they astounded fans with their hyper-active live shows including headlining Glastonbury’s Avalon stage a record four years running.

Splicing dance tunes of old England with the sunny sexy grooves of reggae and lovers’ rock, Edward II transcend superficial notions of “crossover” to forge a truly original synthesis from their far-flung musical roots. Featuring a seven-piece line up that saw melodeon and sax, fiddle and trombone nestling snugly cheek-by-jowl, their repertoire strolled expansively from reworked folk standards like “Wild Mountain Thyme” or “La Russe” to Caribbean classics like Gregory Isaacs “Night Nurse”. They have been long renowned as one of the freshest, funkiest acts on the circuit, they sent crowds from Shetland to Sri Lanka, Brazil to Bangladesh into a jigging, skanking frenzy with their superlative live shows.

Emerging initially as a loose, fluid collective – a self styled “mutant calypso/reggae/African style English dance band” – from the vibrant roots melting-pot of Cheltenham’s Victory Club during the mid-80’s, the band (then called Edward II and the Red Hot Polkas) firmed up personnel and shifted emphasis a few years later, establishing the twin poles of their sound in the Morris-flavoured traditions of rural Oxfordshire, and the dynamic dub-reggae scene of Manchester’s Moss Side. From there, whilst the unique dual core developed into an instantly irresistible signature, the band roamed freely and fruitfully over the expanse of new territory their music opened up, bringing in dashes of jazz, soul, rap, and Celtic dancing styles, all laced with Glenn Latouche’s seductively honeyed lead vocals. By finding the shared dancing pulse in the diverse beats they bring together, EII deliver both a genuinely innovative fusion and a brilliantly redoubled attack.

Just announced: XFM First Friday ft. Jon McClure, The Slow Readers Club + Tim Cocker & Hattie Pearson, 5th December.

XFM First Friday ft. Jon McClure, The Slow Readers Club + Tim Cocker & Hattie Pearson

05 December / 21:00 / More Info / Buy Tickets

The Slow Readers Club are a Manchester based indie / electro band who’s output ranges from insanely catchy upbeat indie to angry, introspective downbeat and beautiful ballads. Their music has drawn comparisons with Interpol, The Killers and Arcade Fire.

This month’s special guest DJ is the ‘Rev’ himself, Jon McClure,  frontman of Sheffield’s Reverend & the Makers. With a huge record collection you can be sure of a he’ll provide plenty of tunes from ska and reggae classics, new releases and indie and guitar bangers. Jon is known for his on-stage banter and impromptu sing-a-longs, so who knows what else will happen!

And of course, XFM DJs Tim and Hattie will be providing music that rocks until the early hours; from game-changing classic anthems to new talent such as Peace, Jake Bugg and Foals, you’re guaranteed to be dancing to the very best rock, indie and alternative music spanning both time and genre.

Just announced: Meshell Ndegeocello, 19th May

Meshell Ndegeocello

19 May / 19:30 / More Info / Tickets on sale 9am, Monday

An authentic musical thinker and an uncompromising artist, Meshell Nedegeocello continues to discover, examine and explore all that music has to offer her, and how she can return the gift.

Groove driven, infectiously melodic and lyrically meditative, Meshell’s latest album, Comet, Come To Me, finds her returning to the same well of creativity that launched her career. Her 11th release, it is possibly a culmination of all previous work: lush, vocal, seeking, wise, collaborative, and driven by the signature bounce and precise pocket of Ndegeocello on bass.

A vast array of influences have informed all of Meshell’s albums, and there are traces of her native go-go, hip hop, R&B, new wave and punk in each. Each album has been a step away from the last, each used as a chance to investigate and integrate new sounds and ideas, and fans have been treated to everything from the deep-funk of Plantation Lullabies to the raw and confessional Bitter to the melodic, lyrical Weather. Possessed with instrumental gifts as diverse as her interests, Meshell composed, arranged and produced a jazz record in 2005. Her most last release paid homage to Nina Simone, a kindred musical spirit and among Meshell’s most cherished inspirations.

A bass player above all else, Meshell brings her warm, fat, and melodic groove to everything she does and has appeared alongside the Rolling Stones, Madonna, Alanis Morrisette, James Blood Ulmer, The Blind Boys of Alabama, Tony Allen, John Medeski, Billy Preston, and Chaka Khan. As for her own bass-playing influences, she credits Sting, Jaco Pastorius, Family Man Barrett, and Stevie Wonder. Meshell was the first woman to be featured on the cover of Bass Player magazine and remains one of few women who write the music, sing the songs, and lead the band.

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